Mumbai: Reinstate train concessions, senior citizens tell railways
Post lockdown in March, railways decided to give concessions only to the disabled
Prior to the lockdown in March this year, the railways used to give ticket concessions to senior citizens but it was stopped amidst the pandemic. However, even as public transport and other railway services are gradually opening up, elderly commuters have demanded that the railways should once again start providing them with the facility.
"The unlock process is now on and train services are being introduced slowly as per requirements. The railways should think of providing the concessions again," said senior citizen Jatin Desai, who has filed an RTI in the matter.
The concessions provided to different categories of passengers ranged from 10 per cent to 100 per cent. Following the lockdown in March a lot of train services were cancelled across the country and the railways had decided that concessions would be given only to those with disability (Divyangjan), 11 categories of patients and students. Prior to that the concessions were available to more than 50 categories of passengers – Divyangjan, patients, youth, artists, kisan, sportspersons, medical professionals, senior citizens, awardees, war widows, students and accredited media journalists – across reservation counters.
Speaking to mid-day, Ajit Shenoy of Mumbai Vikas Samiti and Mumbai Transport Forum said, "It is absurd. The government should be taking care of senior citizens instead of adopting such methods. Elderly people do not travel for leisure. The government should not withdraw the existing concessions."
Another commuter Akash Joshi said that his parents were stuck in a different city and had to travel to Mumbai on a special train by paying the full fare. "Concessions would have made a lot of difference to the total fare. Also, as the unlock process has started, the railways should think of resuming the concessions," he said. A railway spokesperson said that as of now there was no new proposal to restart the concessions.
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